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Once upon a time, there was a passionate, generous, selfless millennial. Must be a fairy tale, right? Not so fast!

What if I told you that not only is there one millennial with these qualities, but that there are many? In fact, millennials as a whole are generous with their time, money, and influence.

We know that the rise of social media has changed our world, but we often hear more about the negatives than the positives. The truth is that social media can be a good thing in many ways and millennials are tapped into it constantly. Millennials use these platforms to engage in discourse and promote awareness of causes that are important to them. This constant connection that we have to the world makes it even more likely that we know what’s going on globally. Today, would world news even be on your radar without internet or television? We’ve got so much knowledge available, and technology makes it easy to gain awareness and support a cause.

Millennials also put their money where their mouths are when it comes to social issues. It’s well known that millennials are saddled with staggering amounts of student debt. On top of this, they’ve also seen a rise in the cost of living with no relief from regular salary increases. Even so, they still donate proportionately more to charitable causes than previous generations.

Millennials are connected to their causes, but they have different preferences than those before them when it comes to supporting charitable organizations. Maybe it’s because they incorporate their causes into their lifestyle, but they also have higher expectations for these organizations. Millennials tend to value transparency, technical savvy, and a show of individual impact from any charitable causes they’re willing to support.

Due to the size of this generation, it’s important to understand the millennial connection to causes and evaluate the potential impact. In our Millennial Monday blogs, we’ve explored the potential impact millennials can have on businesses. If you want to engage millennials (and employees in general) in yours, take the opportunity to get involved in charitable causes. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Choose

Choose a cause. Millennials are socially conscious, but we really just want to feel like we have the power to make a positive change. Choose something that is important to you, your employees, your industry, or even your community. It’s even cool if your choice is to support causes in general! I love the idea of letting your employees decide causes to support and giving them company time to volunteer or participate.

Commit

Really commit to your chosen cause. You need to talk the talk, not just walk the walk. Don’t just claim to support a cause – show that you do. Stay involved and embed these values into your company culture. Engage your company and the millennials will take notice.

Inspire

Inspire others, within or outside of your organization, to get involved in the cause. Spread the love! Leadership should lead the charge.

Include

Include as many people as possible. In order to infuse social consciousness into your company culture, you need to make sure every employee has the opportunity to engage in it.

Impact

Don’t just participate – show real impact! Highlight your impact, set goals, and make sure to sing your praises when you reach them. Show millennials that they have the power to make a difference by being a part of your organization. This will also serve to keep things exciting for all employees, as opposed to becoming just another task on a to-do list.

Do you have any volunteer or other related programs in place at your company? What are some causes that you think your organization would encourage employees to support?

Want to explore how to expand your organization’s connection to causes even further?

Check out this ‘choose your own adventure’!